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The Charter-Oak

by Lydia Howard Sigourney

Charter Oak, Charter Oak
Tell us a tale,
Of the years that have fled,
Like the leaves on the gale,

For thou bear'st a brave annal,
On brown root and stem,
And thy heart was a casket,
For liberty's gem.

Speak out, in thy wisdom,
Oracular tree,
And we, and our children,
Will listen to thee,

For the lore of the aged,
Is dear in our eyes,
And thy leaves, and thine acorns,
As relics we prize.

I see them, they come,
The dim ages of old,
The sires of our nation,
True-hearted and bold,

The axe of the woodman,
Rings sharp through the glade,
And the poor Indian hunter,
Reclines in the shade.

I see them, they come,
The gray fathers are there,
Who won from the forest,
This heritage fair,

With their high trust in heaven,
When they suffer'd or toil'd,
Both the tempest and tyrant,
Unblenching, they foil'd.

Charter-Oak, Charter-Oak,
Ancient and fair,
Thou didst guard of our freedom,
The rudiment rare,

So, a crown of green leaves,
Be thy gift from the skies,
With the love of the brave,
And the thanks of the wise.